Freak crash takes icon
Sleeping hand in hand with her soulmate and husband Anthony in hospital, Kelly Exeter said her final goodbye.
The beloved father of two was the “emotional axis” on which his family’s world rotated.
But on Friday afternoon, that world was shattered when the 41-year-old was catastrophically injured in a freak accident.
Mr Exeter was driving on Bussell Highway near Ludlow with his wife and their two children about 1.15pm on Friday when a canopy on a boat being towed in front of them detached and slammed into the windscreen of their car.
He was admitted to Royal Perth Hospital with serious injuries and died on Sunday after his life support system was switched off.
Mr Exeter’s wife and children were not hurt in the incident.
In an emotional Facebook post hours after her husband’s death, Mrs Exeter said he had suffered a catastrophic brain injury and could not recover. “Last night I got the chance to sleep hand in hand with my soulmate,” she wrote.
“Tonight he passed away peacefully shortly after breathing tubes were removed. To say we are devastated is an understatement.
“For Jaden, Mia and me, he was the emotional axis our world rotated on.
“Thank you to everyone for your thoughts, wishes and prayers over the last two days. We are so privileged to have the network of love and support we do.”
Mr Exeter’s family said yesterday that his defining qualities were his “absolute love of life” and “ability to live in the moment”.
They said his death had left a “huge hole” in their lives.
“He found a way to make any situation fun — whether it was drinks at the pub with his friends or breaking up a squabble between his two children,” the family said. “He adored his little family unit of Kelly, Jaden
and Mia, and would do anything for them.”
Mrs Exeter asked people, who were planning to send flowers, to consider donating to charity Rafiki Mwema.
“It is a charity that looks after children who are not privileged to experience the love, care and safety Ant provided our children with,” she said.
On the basketball court, Mr Exeter was a star whose decorated career included a most valuable player award and more than 300 State league games.
A WA basketball stalwart with the Rockingham Flames and Perth Redbacks in the State Basketball League, Mr Exeter was crowned SBL rookie of the year in his debut season for the Flames in 1995 and is among a few Australians to earn the league’s highest honour, named most valuable player in 2000.
He was selected for the SBL all-star team from 1999 to 2001.
Police say the incident is being investigated.
They want to speak to anyone who was travelling on Bussell Highway on Friday afternoon and has dash-cam vision.
Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or crimestopperswa.com.au
Last night I got the chance to sleep hand in hand with my soulmate. Kelly Exeter
Police inspect the car after the accident on Bussell Highway.
Anthony Exeter playing for the Rockingham Flames in the SBL.